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View Full Version : Hike and ski Wildcats?



Bluethroatedone
02-21-2006, 02:11 PM
Thinking of doing the following...can anyone tell me if its possible/advisable. My wife and I need to cross off the Wildcats off of our list (13 to go).

Could we hike up the two peaks with koflachs/crampons on, ski boots in our pack, skis (alpine) strapped somehow to the back of the packs... bushwack to the top of the lift and ski down to the bottom. The idea of not having to go down 2500ft is highly pleasing to my knees.

Any thoughts? Anyone done this?

David Metsky
02-21-2006, 02:19 PM
If you had AT or Tele gear you could skin up the side of Polecat and then back down without needing to carry extra boots. You can hike up in AT boots, it's a good excuse to buy more gear. :)

People often sled down in a semi-controlled manner. Carry a small Swiss Bob or similar type of sled and save a lot a weight on your back.

-dave-

Mike P.
02-21-2006, 05:22 PM
While walking down pole-cat yesterday in crampons after hiking over both Wildcats, (we probably should have switched to snowshoes so we would have slid a little bit) I saw a few people in short very short skis. Can you rent those? If yes they would be easy to attach to your pack & would not get all caught up in the tree branches.

bobandgeri
02-21-2006, 05:52 PM
Mike you are probably saw people on snow blades - They are designed to fit regular downhill ski boots. They are a lot of fun, but unfortuantly, do not fit our Koflachs :<

David Metsky
02-22-2006, 07:46 AM
If you're going to rent, consider AT over Tele, since you have no tele experience. You can hike in the boots and they take crampons and snowshoes very easily. Just stash the skis up top in the woods and walk along the ridge and back.

-dave-

the starchild
02-22-2006, 07:49 AM
Mike you are probably saw people on snow blades - They are designed to fit regular downhill ski boots. They are a lot of fun, but unfortuantly, do not fit our Koflachs :<

i have two friends with Kong Grimpers(1 meter skiboards) and koflachs degre's work in the freeheel/locking binding no problem. my scarpa plastics fit great too.

i am organizing a trip in late march to carter hut and down wildcat ski area on ski's, i may have 2 openings and will post here if available. its MUCH more fun skiing down than hiking

Bluethroatedone
02-22-2006, 12:17 PM
Thanks for all the suggestions everyone! Much appreciated.

Kevin Rooney
02-22-2006, 02:46 PM
Just a word of caution re: skis or anything long on the Wildcat Ridge - most old-timers do the Wildcats by going up 19 Mile Brook and to Wildcat E, and then come across the ridge and down the Polecat ski trail. While my friends Cath and Jeff did an admirable brushing job recently along the ridge, it's been overgrown for many years, and you may run the risk of constantly getting your skis hung up in the overhead limbs/brush. Consequently, if it were me - until I'd had confirmed reports of others lugging their skis along the ridge, I'd leave them home as it may be more trouble than it's worth (just ask Jonatha). If you're determined to slide/glide down, then maybe a Swissbob, or ever the roll-up plastic sleds? Got one for about $5 several years ago at Aubuchons.

Mike P.
02-22-2006, 03:24 PM
Kevin's right & I coud see that being an issue (read major pain in the a$$) most years, just being tall. If you go very soon, however, & set skis so they are not too high, this may the time to do it.

We were they Monday & trail markers on the ridge are at chest height to eye lever (five to six feet above the ground) They normally should be wait high or lower, perhaps even under the snow.

I was thinking that in a normal snow year (that could change in 1 storm)
even hauling snowshoes that stick up above your pack would be unpleasant.

lamerunner
02-22-2006, 03:36 PM
One possibility would be to get someone to carry your skis and poles/boots up on the lift and stash them somewhere. Kind of a logistical hassle but possible. Know anyone on ski patrol??

I should add that I abandoned this concept despite the fact my whole family was Wildcat skiing while I was hiking.After dropping off kids and their gear, it just was too complicated.

Hiking down Polecat is not so bad though, if a bit tedious

Tom Rankin
02-22-2006, 03:52 PM
... If you're determined to slide/glide down, then maybe a Swissbob ...

I just bought a Swissbob at E M S for $9.99. They're having a huge clearance on all kinds of stuff. I also got a nice pair of gloves for $9.99.

David Metsky
02-22-2006, 04:40 PM
One possibility would be to get someone to carry your skis and poles/boots up on the lift and stash them somewhere. Kind of a logistical hassle but possible. Know anyone on ski patrol??
If you want to count the peaks for your list I think you should carry your skis up with you. No fair having soming haul your gear for you. :)

-dave-

RoySwkr
02-22-2006, 06:22 PM
- most old-timers do the Wildcats by going up 19 Mile Brook and to Wildcat E, and then come across the ridge and down the Polecat ski trail.
Even older-timers used to go up & down the Polecat, you could carry your skis maybe a little beyond the col and stash them in a snowdrift


If you want to count the peaks for your list I think you should carry your skis up with you. No fair having soming haul your gear for you.
The FTFC allows others to carry stuff for you (happens a lot with kids & spouses), but I think sending them up on the lift is a bit much

CraigW
02-22-2006, 08:27 PM
I skined up Wildcat via polecat a few years back in March. Besides the dozen or so "wrong way" comments from downhillers and a few "earn your turns!" back at them, I had a good time.

I tried to bare boot solo to Wildcat A, but postholed to the hip miserably 3 times in the soft snow. The last time contorted in a way which was difficult to break free. Not confident skiing solo on an unfamiliar trail in 3 feet of slush, and without snowshoes I skiied down.

I will get you yet, Wildcat A!!

Oh yeah, your question. maybe koflachs/crampons/snowshoes/small sled would cover every angle.

lamerunner
02-23-2006, 09:33 AM
I was more thinking it would be fun to hike over and have skis waiting than that it would "count"... but I ended up walking anyway, making the Polecat even more tedious than it is on skis.

If we got more snow, another alternative would be to hike or skin up the Wildcat Valley Trail from Jackson then ski down. .. but I doubt that would be much fun now.

Thunder Dan
02-26-2006, 07:09 PM
It is interesting to know that it is apparently okay to hike along the ski trail at Wildcat Mountain. Cannon Mountain does not allow people to hike along the side fo their trails. I got lectured about doing that last weekend. I guess each ski area has its own policy on these things.

Dan F
02-27-2006, 09:12 PM
I carried skis from Carter to Wildcat five years ago, and agree with the previous admonition about overhead clearance. I don't think I've ever walked so far doubled over. My back still hurts. But it was worth it for the trip down! With luck the aforementioned trailwork has improved the situation.

SherpaKroto
02-28-2006, 10:18 PM
It is interesting to know that it is apparently okay to hike along the ski trail at Wildcat Mountain. Cannon Mountain does not allow people to hike along the side fo their trails. I got lectured about doing that last weekend. I guess each ski area has its own policy on these things.
Wildcat = National Forest Land. Lease is based on "multi-use"
Cannon = State Park Land

Different strokes from different folks.

CraigW: I got the same "wrong way" comments. At first amusing, but after about 20 (with many repeat offenders :rolleyes: ) it got a bit old. Skiing down on my Karhu Pavo's was a hoot. As soon as I gave up all pretense of tele turning and went to a paramark technique, the real fun began :) I highly recommend doing the Wildcats in this fashion!

DougPaul
02-28-2006, 11:17 PM
It is interesting to know that it is apparently okay to hike along the ski trail at Wildcat Mountain. Cannon Mountain does not allow people to hike along the side fo their trails. I got lectured about doing that last weekend. I guess each ski area has its own policy on these things.
My understanding is that it depends on the agreement between the ski area and the land owner. In otherwords, you have to read the fine print...
Doug

Mike P.
03-01-2006, 12:44 PM
Walking Pole Cat tedious? you bet at least on a clear day you get great views. Compared to walking back on Route 16 to the 19 mile trailhead, walking Polecat is almost exciting. :rolleyes: